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Making Buddypress a Social Network for non-bloggers?

  • designodyssey


    I’ve been searching around everywhere for plugins, etc. to make Buddypress more manageable for my project – a niche website with social interaction added. I don’t think I’m alone in not wanting 1000s of blogs/groups, but still wanting some of that functionality in a more controlled way (i.e., can’t just turn off the BP module).

    In search for solutions, I came across a discussion that nails it.

    Nutshell.Buddypress is primarily for social networking among bloggers. Yet, IMHO, many of the best BP implementations hacked BP to death to get a social network among casual visitors/subscribers, not bloggers. (e.g.,,

    What extensions do we need to facilitate this? Here’s my partial list which is not necessarily a feature request, but maybe a plugin wish list or a hack solution wishlist:

    1. Ability of users/groups (by role) to post to their profile page with some formatting/media embedding – like a post, but without them having a whole blog/site and without having to go to wp-admin (preferably)
    2. Limit who can create a blog/group based on role
    3. Rethinking the theme framework concept to consider that many sites will be adding a BP layer to a new/existing site based on a WP theme framework (a la Buddymatic) where using BP as the parent isn’t desirable.

    Obviously, these issues get at what BP is being designed for. As my post above suggests, the merge will impact that roadmap (or IMHO it should). Currently there seems little discussion of #1 and I have a hackish idea below. #2 has been worked on and bpcontents plugin and others have sought to address this. #3 is something that I hope is addressed as part of the merge. Already other developers have used Thematic and Thesis as parents with BP partially integrated. I like that idea, but have concerns about upgradeability. Thoughts??


    Solving #1 – Hackish idea through plugin.

    • Create TinyMCE post submission form (using Gravity Forms of course) that is only visible on user’s profile page and only by logged-in user
    • User submits “post” through form that is added to a unique subcategory of a “profiles” category – e.g. “profiles/userid”
    • Profile page shows only posts where post category matches the userid.

    I think this works, but it might require some hooks and de-polluting the backend so that these posts are organized for the admin to deal with. Thoughts??

Viewing 7 replies - 26 through 32 (of 32 total)

  • symm2112


    The gravity forms is the same situation as TDO in that whenver a new group blog is created, before you can use the form, you would have to create the form for it to hook into. With the way you’re talking about, it works beautifully if you’re using this for your main blog, but if you want to use the group blogs, it won’t show up because the forms are blog specific. I played with embedding the form I created into my sub blogs template and kept breaking the site until i realized that the form i created on my main blog did not exist in my sub blog.

    I’m following your ideas in here very closely because we’re both in the same situation.



    @Designodyssey: some creative thinking going on here! I’m interested if you can find a hack/solution to let users or groups easily create group blog post without the need to visit the WP admin panel and with the basic post functionality (wysiwyg editor etc) Keep up updated :)



    @Bowe & @Designodyssey:

    I would be interested in the same solution as well. I got the community blog plug in working, but making a post is still like going to the backend admin section of a blog. I played with P2 a little as well but still prefer the default buddypress theme.



    @Symm2112. Just left the GF forums and it does need to be activated on each blog separately. They said they’d look into changing this, but not until after the merge (boy that merge is going to open some doors).

    I’m looking to do a single blog install, so this solution still might work for me. I’ll have many groups, but one blog, therefore only one GF. Each group can still get it’s own category for posts (e.g. $blogcategory = “blog” . $blogid). I can display posts to that category only on that groups page (e.g. is(category)).

    I can afford to be a bit patient and see how this all develops. I’m actually not even in the BP stage of development. Still kicking the tires on my XAMPP WPMU install and making sure my other core functionality (e.g. the mapping I mentioned above) is working before I even install BP (will wait for 1.2 and WPMU 2.9).

    Given the theming issues, I’ll probably install Hybrid as a parent and ensure it’s working before I install BP. I’ll keep folks posted when I get to this. I’m just a planner by nature, so I’m trying to think things through – measure twice, cut once.



    Do I need to have the network and super admin with buddy press. I didn’t because I don’t want individual blogs. Is there another way to deactivate blogs? And above the mention something called thesis. What is that? I have a test site and everything seems to be working great. And but it is network activated. My production site has everything installed correctly except the network is not activated. But this production site doesn’t send a activation emails. If I had network activated, how do I deactivate blogs? I also wonder about having group pages. Something that can explain the group in the march larger page. And then have all the other group pages be subordinate.



    Thesis is only a WordPress theme.

    You don’t need to create a WordPress network if you don’t want users to create full-blown WordPress blogs.

    If you want your users to post on a single WordPress install without creating a WP network, you might be interested in this thread:



    I basically set up the WordPress Network now but I unchecked the option in super admin this said register and a blog and checked the mark that was for register only. I run and advocacy website for people with disabilities. I would like each person who wants to advocate for a disability issue to be able to create one. And of course others to be able to see. It would include a banner if they have one. To below do have links and to be able to add them without knowing the code. Just paste a link in. And then be able to do everything groups can. Maybe have the check box for each user to create a new regular group or new advocacy group. Or maybe I could this have just the group’s transformed into disability groups or something without having the choice.
    Kind of like a group face page or frontpage. Instead of the group comments being on front this face page could be one large page.
    Can anyone help me.

Viewing 7 replies - 26 through 32 (of 32 total)
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